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Former Egyptian leader Morsi collapses, dies in court

CAIRO — Egypt’s state TV said the country’s ousted President Mohammed Morsi collapsed during a court session and died.

The state TV said the 67-year-old Morsi was attending a session Monday in his trial on espionage charges when he blacked out and then died. His body was taken to a hospital, it said.

A defense lawyer said Morsi spoke for around five minutes during the court appearance before collapsing inside the cage he was held in and died.

Morsi’s son, Ahmed, confirmed the death of his father in a Facebook post.

Kamel Madour, a member of the imprisoned leader’s defense team, says Morsi “was very calm and organized. He summarized our argument in three to five minutes. He insisted on a special tribunal as he is the president of the republic.”

Madour said that the former president, on trial for espionage, refused to reveal state secrets.

Morsi, who hailed from Egypt’s largest Islamist group, the now outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, was elected president in 2012 in the country’s first free elections following the ouster the year before of longtime leader Hosni Mubarak. The military ousted Morsi in 2013 after massive protests and crushed the Brotherhood in a major crackdown, arresting Morsi and many others of the group’s leaders.

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